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tv   Piers Morgan Tonight  CNN  March 28, 2011 9:00pm-10:00pm EDT

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>> i have covered this region for a long time. someone would have said to me only a few months ago, we're going to see in yemen and bahrain and syria, north africa, tunisia all these things beginning. this is really going to get going pretty crazy. john, thanks have been much. much more of our coverage continuing right now on piers morgan tonight. >> at this particular country libya, at this particular moment, we were faced with prospects of violence on a horrific scare. >> air strikes in libya, political warfare at home. did his speech change anything? >> we can make a difference. i believe that this movement of change cannot be turned back. and that we must stand alongside those who believe in the same
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core principles that have guided us through many storms. >> tonight as the president sold the american people on this mission of getting rid of gadhafi. is this country's role in the middle east changing? this is the great middle east debate. a special edition of piers morgan tonight. >> the really tough question tonight, does operation odyssey door signal a major change in america's foreign policy in that region? tonight the great middle east debate for some of the top minds in the country, both sides of the aisle. senator lindsay graham, donald trump. congressman anthony wiener, p.j. crowley. former libyan ambassador, general richard myers. we begin tonight with cnn's ni k
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robertson live from tripoli. did anyone see the speech where you are? >> reporter: no one will have seen it on state television and there's been no comment on state television about it. they have chosen to broadcast a number of other things, reruns of political analysts putting forth the government position. but plenty of people you can be sure will have watched it on channels like cnn. they watch the international news organizations here, particularly anyone in the opposition because they don't trust the state media here because they don't get the full picture. but it's the middle of the night here so we really don't have reaction from anyone at the moment. certainly you can count on the fact that gadhafi will feel that he's dodged the bullet at the moment because the mission is not going to be broadened to putting boots on the ground. >> it seems to me, we're still not really sure, i don't think, what this mission is. because there is a confusion between a position that says we
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don't want regime change, but we do want gadhafi gone, isn't there? >> the way it read here is that this is the international army coming in on the side of the opposition to rebuild the sort of colonial footprint here, divide the country, steal the oil. that's the message here, so that's what the gadhafi regime is fighting against, fighting against the rebels, doesn't know how to fight against the coalition, looking for an opening, perhaps looking for a bit of diplomacy, if they are, they aren't making it very public. perhaps this opens up the space and time for some diplomacy, would you say it's not clear, this is a very opaque government here, it's always in the international community. but for sure, gadhafi's plan is to hang on as long as he can. and he will feel that he has more hanging time left. piers? >> finally the most significant development in the speech seemed
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possibly to be the admission by president obama that america would now be actively henning these rebels and presumably arming them in the process. what did you make of that development in this story? >> reporter: if that's the way this is going to take shape over the coming weeks and months, it's clearly going to be a very protracted affair, because the opposition really isn't in a place to face off against gadhafi's army, even if you neutralize the army, their heavy weapons, their superiority, and advantage on the battlefield, what would seem to be serving -- gadhafi's armed the tribes o s l to him so you see people with more weapons on gadhafi's side and will use them against the rebels. this will turn to a wider civil
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war where even gadhafi can't predict what's going to happen. if the united states and others are going to arm the rebels, he's going to have to keep the pressure up on the rebels and he's going to have to arm the population that will support him. those oil installations that the rebels have just taken over the last few days piers. >> nic robertson, i want to turn to reaction to president obama's speech in this country. senator lindsay graham is one of the top republicans on the armed services committee. he says the president should have acted sooner in libya. what did you make of the president's speech? >> i thought it was very good. and the way we chose to act, we should have done it about three weeks ago, this thing would have been over. but i thought he did a good job talking about the signal we would send, that we are a values
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base people and standing by these young people in libya will serve us well in the future. the goal of this country is to replace gadhafi. if you look at the balance sheet of what it cost this nation with gadhafi versus what it cost without him, it is in our interest to ge get rid of him and the opposition needs continued military support, not a ground invasion by the u.s. or any other western power, but air support, all the way to tripoli, very few people want to die for gadhafi, so if we'll continue the model we have in place, following the rebels, knocking out tank and arrest tiltillerar will win and a lot of people will die unnecessarily. >> you have criticized president obama for taking too long. he made the point that he took 31 days to build this coalition where in bosnia it took a year. >> the opposition forced had
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gadhafi on the ropes and we did not impose a no fly zone where it would matter the most. we made mistakes in iraq, and to my fellow republican friends, nobody complained about the cost of iraq or afghanistan on our watch. i'm tired of hearing people talk about it cost too much. let me tell you about what it will cost if gadhafi comes back into power, instability forever, incredible oil price spikes. young people throughout the arab world thinking we let them down at a time we could help them. so the balance sheet of keeping him versus letting him go is not even close. >> but senator, you do talk about the economic part of all of this and it's very laudable. but the reality of those, we don't know much about these rebels, do we? i'm told that these rebels for example may be haasi ihousing significant numbers of al qaeda members for example. is that the kind of rebel army that we should be supporting?
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>> here's what i do know. these people who are fighting gadhafi i don't believe are taking to the streets and risking their live tots replace gadhafi with al qaeda. there are al qaeda elements. but we need to pour it on, we need to stay behind the opposition forces, give them the support just like we are now. but when this is over and gadhafi leaves, it would be a huge mistake not to help the libyan people. we will help the libyan people. it is my believe that these young arabs in egypt, tunisia, libya, now syria do not want to replace these regimes with more oppressive regimes. they are not going to the streets in egypt to have al qaeda to take over. >> but isn't that exactly what people were saying in iran before they were indeed taken over by extremists. >> when the shaw fell, we didn't do much in the few months before the ayatollahs came back. we are getting it right finally
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in iraq and afghanistan. if we will help the libyan people at a time when they need us the most which is now militarily, and when he leaves gadhafi will help build a civil society. it will pay great dividends. this is a great struggle. history is being made in the arab world. don't let it pass, help these people, they need our help and it will be in our national interests to get gadhafi out of there and to help the good people of libya and i think the good people of libya will win the day with our help. a defense official tells cnn today that the u.s. military has already cut back it's stay to day presence in libya. the president said that as of wednesday, nato will take over the responsibility of protecting libyan civilians. so has military action turned the tide? general myers, from a military perspective, is it satisfactory
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and clear enough for the military leaders that you have the president saying we don't want regime change, but we do want gadhafi gone? >> i think so far so good. i think we're putting all our bets on the opposition and as senator graham said, they seem to be pretty -- they have made some gains here recently. and so i mean that's -- i think we can live with that, i think the u.s. military can live with that. i think we have heard that from the current military leaders and i think nato is in a position to run the coalition, drive the coalition and make that happen. >> i mean one of the key things here, and i have just asked that question of the senator is do we really know who these rebels are? there are varying reports of al qaeda presence there, that some of their number actually fought in iraq against americans. are these the kind of people we can trust to be the stable future government of this country that we presumably
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believe they can be? >> i think piers we're going to learn a lot more as there's going to be a get-together in london to talk to some of the opposition leadership. that was one of the big issues in iraq. there are many who thought that the opposition once saddam hussein's regime was over the opposition would take over and run iraq. here we are eight years later still trying to support a government that's struggling to govern that country appropriately. i don't think we know enough to say that. those are all questions up in the air. hopefully what happens in london will clarify that. >> if we assume the president is right when we his this is a humanitarian exercise, what happens if these rebels begin to turn their guns on progadhafi supporters who are civilians? >> that's the -- you know, that's always the question.
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i think the president did a good job talking about the interests of the world community and helping the opposition against gadhafi. i thought that was well done. but it all has to go according to script and it takes great discipline not to let these sorts of issues escalate. president bush wanted to go into afghanistan, capture or kill al qaeda, overthrow the taliban and we were going to get out. we're not going to do it like the last administration, we're going to get out of here. we're still there because once you stir it up and people are in need, missions tend to escalate. it will be interesting what the coalition does and will we have the discipline to stick to what the president said we're going to do. the world took notice when members of moammar gadhafi re's regime turned against him.
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what do you think of the speech tonight? >> i think it's a great speech, the president was very clear, very determined and defend his decision in a very nice way and i think he convinced the american people. >> what happens for arguments sake if colonel gadhafi remains in power. where does that leave everybody? >> i don't think there is any chance for gadhafi to stay in power. gadhafi has been rejected by the libyan people, they experienced gadhafi for the last 42 years and they decided and determined that they have to get rid of him and the coalition did a very good job helping the libyan people to march through to save and to skew the -- i think this is the opportunity for the libyan people to dream that they
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can have a democratic country, they have can their own future. the tradition of the americans to stand by the libyans is a great thing to happen in our history. the americans, they proved to the world they will not only intervene if there is american interests only, but they will intervene when the american interests and security is facing a challenge and they intervene also when human life is in danger. this is a historical decision and i think that the -- show the american support that has been taken by the president. we really appreciate what america did for the libyan people. the libyan people they are suffering for the last 42 years. they deserve a better government, they deserve to live their life.
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>> but ambassador, let me interrupt you there, in egypt for example, the president was very keen to say we do not get involve in internal revolutions like this. it's down to the people of egypt and what they want. here in libya, he decided to go a different way and engage in military action to help what is effectively a similar kind of revolution, it's people who want to get rid of a dictatorial leader. there seems to be a little bit of hypocrisy here in the way that the american leadership is dealing with this. >> in egypt and tunisia, the government they never used that kind of force and they never strike their own people by aircraft and sophisticated weapons. the army, they stand neutral until a certain time and then they side with the people. but gadhafi started shooting his
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own people. this is a new human issue. protecting the libyan civilian is the commitment of the national community in the first place. when the people there defend themselves, what do you think the international community, just wait and look at them until another massacre happens in libya? i think that's what has been done is a great thing. the coalition they did a great job, and i think you have to be proud of this international community that decided in 31 days to stand by the libyan people. >> thank you very much. when we come back, i'll ask former and perhaps future presidential candidate rudy giuliani why the transition has cost lives.
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it's true that america cannot use our military wherever oppression occurs. given the costs and risks of intervention, we must always measure or interests against the need for action. but that cannot be an argument for never acting on behalf of what's right.
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>> that was the president talking about the cost of intervention in libya. here with us is rudy giuliani. has this country been at war in the last ten days? >> sure we have been at war. we have been bombing targets, what 1,000 targets? we have killed military assets in direction, we have attacked the country. the fact that another country doesn't want us there. yes, we're in a war, yes we're in the middle of a civil war, the president's speech tonight has made things even murkier than they were before. the whole purpose is to clarify our mission, our mission is just internally contradictory, the purpose of our mission is to protect the people of lib yacya. how do you protect the people of libya and not be for regime
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change in libya? isn't the danger to the people of libya gadhafi? >> that's a kwee question, it seems to me, is what is the end game? this guy has ruthlessly held power for 42 years. right now, we're in a position where if gadhafi hangs on, where does that leave everybody? >> it leaves america, it leaves the middle east and the world in a very terrible situation. it leaves the people in libya even more in danger than they were before. that's why i say the president's speech is illogical. if you were grading this on a greek logic exam, would give it an f. the speech contradicts himself it says limited action, we're not going to go any further than just protecting the people of
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libya, we're not going to be for regime change, but you can't protect the people of libya without regime change. why are we there in the first place, because gadhafi was slaughtering his people. how can you leave him there? >> let's state the president's position, you got a big mess in iraq, you've got a big mess in afghanistan. you have already vowed, i'm going to get us out of this messes. then you have this huge uprising in the middle east and egypt goes relatively well, mubarak stands down after 18 or so days, gadhafi doesn't and it looks like he's about to commit atrocities. if you're president, what do you do is there? there is a good argument for the white house to have done exactly what they have done, which is not go all guns blazing, not commit america to a huge war again. >> the thing about obama, ask he doesn't seem like a president, he seems like a president candidate. his previous comments as a presidential candidate are
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restricting his decision making as a president. actually what the president should have done is to make a decision that you would think as a post -- you go in or you don't go in. you go in with a clear goal and we don't have one yet. the president of the united states did not define a clear goal. he didn't tell us what success is. he can't because he's contradicted himself. you know what success is? success is removing gadhafi. he just doesn't want to say that. and we're going to slip into it. and it is better for america to slip into it or is it better for the united states ten days ago to have stood up as a leader and say this is what we're going to do with france, this is what we're going to do with the u.n. and this is our goal. >> would you have been happy to see the french faking the lead followed by the british and the americans sending most of the forces in terms of all these, you know, missiles being fired, but not wanting to have the credit for doing that?
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>> i don't quite understand that. i think this is america as follower rather than america as leader. i think the reality is this idea that he's afraid that we're intervening too much in the middle east and it looks bad. well who asked him to intervene in the middle east? the arab league. if they're so darned upset about us being in the middle east, why did they ask us to intervene. >> what's happening in syria, the leadership there killing large numbers of people, ever increasing numbers of people. there is a humanitarian situation in syria, there's likely to be one in yemen, both probably more dangerous places as far as the security of america than libya. >> when you read the speech tonight, there's no limiting principle. he'll try to do it, but we should be in syria if we are in libya. if you accept the president's premises. >> if you're consistent. >> i mean assaad is just as bad if not currently worse than gadhafi.
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gadhafi was terrible in the past, gadhafi stopped supporting terrorism, now he's doing terrible things. his father was a person who slaughtered people. it is more in our national interest to seek a regime change in syria than this is in libya, in america's interest and israel's interest. the supreme regime change would be of the extreme commanders in iran. that's really where our national interest is located and the president is not in favor of regime change the iran, but he's in favor of regime change in libya. he wants to talk to iran. >> any expert in this region will tell you that iran is probably a much more present and clear threat to america's security an libya. >> i have never understood why the united states government does not clearly say we're in favor of regime change in iran. the whole region is infected by ahmadinejad, it lies at the core of so many of our problems. that's a place where regime
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change is absolutely necessary. the president is sneaking up on all this, but it would be much better to have a policy in advance. there's no question the events in egypt, the events in libya now caught the president by surprise, to say that he has a policy, even like an obama doctrine is really just afforden on obama. here's the doctrine, if france wants us to do it, if the u.n. wants us to do it, if the arab league wants us to do it, then we'll do it. that's the obama doctrine. coming up, president obama arguing his case for the mission in libya. did he accomplish his own mission? did he convince the american people? [ male announcer ] nature valley sweet & salty nut bars... they're made from whole roasted nuts and dipped in creamy peanut butter, making your craving for a sweet & salty bar irresistible, by nature valley.
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president obama said it loud and clear tonight, libya and the world would be better off without gadhafi, so are we any closer to getting rid of him? i want to bring in p.j. crowley. former secretary of public of fairs until earlier this month. >> the president's policy is to assist in the removal of moammar gadha gadhafi. the issue is the mechanism. we're acting in a limited manner to level the playing field so that the limited playing field that has -- it's not up to the united states to impose that from outside. >> you worked with nato in koso kosovo, do you think the way this mission has been constructed is likely to be an effective one? >> as a very good example, we
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did a bombing for 79 days, it created conditions that eventually led to the ouster of -- through a variety of tools, economic and political while applying the pressure that we're applying. >> it's an unusual state of affairs to get involve in preventing a humanitarian disaster before it's even started to happen. are you absolutely confident that what everyone assumes was going to happen in benghazi is what was going to happen? >> well, if you look at egypt, the fundamental decision, why egypt worked the way it was, is because the egyptian military from the outset said very clearly, we are not going to turn our weapons on our own people. gadhafi chose a different path, through a combination of armor and aviation, he was in fact
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turning his weapons on his own people and that's what separates gadhafi from other leaders in the region. >> given that's what's happening in syria and yemen, you would want to go in there as well, would you. >> understand the predicates to military action, we got a very strong statement in the gcc and arab league and a very strong resolution from the u.n. security council. so any action that we take will be unique to that particular country, we don't treat egypt the same way that we treat libya or treat yemen, all of those have unique circumstances. if a crisis emerges in syria, the same kind of consultation that we have done in this case in libya, i take appropriate action based on the circumstances that exist in syria at the time. >> but you've got hundreds of people being killed in syria, at what point does that constitute a crisis? >> there's unrest and there's
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civilians getting killed. but it's up to them to dictate that they want change. we cannot -- what we're doing in libya is in fact making sure that we preserve a civilian population that's protected and to prevent a viable alternative to gadhafi. >> there are many in london after the economic meltdown who will in their view say we squandered billions in iraq and afghanistan and possibly more billions here, at what point does america stop meddling in international affairs and look after it's own backyard? >> in fact as secretary clinton and secretary gates said yes, the middle east is in fact of vital interest to the united states. so we're not meddling, we're shaping the world in order to support our national interests and the interests of our friends and allies around the world. but as the president said, iraq
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is a very good alternative view. very significant achievements but at a cost that cannot be replicated in libya or anywhere else. we're applying the military pressure judiciously but it will be a combination of military pressure and political pressure. we think this is something that can be done effectively at a reasonable and sustainable cost. >> the -- counter productive and stupid on the department of defense. do you stand by those comments. >> absolutely. under the circumstances, given the way that the issue emerged, it was my best step to resign. that said, i stand by the words and i do hope that, you know, we
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can take appropriate action so that the prosecution can go forward. my concern was that the actions, restrictive actions against bradley manning, undermine the probability of a very appropriate prosecution. >> there are some that the obama administration like fos -- transparency and truthfulness. and when you were quite honestly transparent and truthful, you got fired. >> i said what i said and i stand by my words but beyond that, i felt it was the appropriate thing to resign at the time. >> p.j. crowley, thank you. next i want to bring you some of the best political minds in the country for the great middle east debate. will president obama's policies succeed in libya and what will it mean for the rest of the arab world? [ male announcer ] ten people are going to win the chevrolet, buick, gmc or cadillac of their choice.
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did president obama act at the right time? what is the end game in libya and how does the rest of the arab world view america's actions? here for the great middle east debate is bill richardson the ambassador for to the middle east under bill clinton. anthony weaver in new york and donald trump on the phone. let me start with you donald
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trump, what was your act reation to president obama's speech tonight? >> he's trying hard, he's under a really stressful people. i really do want to know who we're fighting for, they call them the rebels, but i hear they may be aligned with iran and al qaeda. wouldn't that be really very sad if we're bombing all of these tanks, killing all of these people one way or the other and iran ends up take over libya. >> when you hear president obama say that he wants to get rid of gadhafi, but he doesn't want regime change, does that make sense to you? >> it doesn't make any sense, he's a little afraid of congress because he doesn't want it said that he broke his constitutional law and he's got problems. so he's trying to take sort of a neutral turn and what he said makes absolutely no sense. and at that point if you don't get rid of gadhafi, it's a
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major, major blow to gadhafi. you have saudi arabia. go in and get them. and why aren't they paying for this? >> that's a very good point. governor richardson, let me ask you. is it sensible that america gets involve in what is clearly a civil war in libya? >> well, i felt that the president was very presidential tonight, he explained the purpose to avert a humanitarian disaster, to protect civilian lives? he even added another humanitarian initiative and that is a refugee crisis going to tunisia and egypt. look, this is a very difficult situation, but he also stated that nato is going to be take over, it's a limited military operation. this involves our allies, nato, our most important alliance. the north africa, libya is
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important, one to our allies, to nato, to france, to italy, it's important to north africa, to the arab countries, to the arab league. it's important in our oil supply, look at gas prices in in libya spiking. so i believe in a difficult situation, and probably looking back, piers, the president should have called more people in congress. but this is not a war powers operation. this is a limited military operation that presidential authority can have and take and should take to protect america's interests and he did it. see i was very satisfied with his speech tonight. again, consultation with congress in the days ahead is going to be very important. but he explained the objective. and he explained what he wants to do and, look, the air strikes have succeeded, air defenses of libya have been almost
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destroyed, the rebels are gaining mow men full, look, they're probably not perfect revolutionary characters, but they're sure as heck a lot better than gadhafi staying. we don't want him to have a weapons of mass destruction program like he had before. so i applaud the president tonight. >> do you agree with that assessment? >> i think a sign that the president's probably on the right path, is that his critics are criticizing him in the same interview for not going far enough and fast enough. it also has a lot of gray scenarios, and let us remember the coalition that got put together was put together by the obama administration. when the arab league stepped forward and said something they hardly ever say, which is we want force to protect fellow arabs from an arab dictator. >> donald trump had a good point, the staaudis are keen fo america to step in and get rid
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of gadhafi, why don't they pay for it? we are stuck in, when you drop bombs on people, you're at war, aren't you? >> the same exact arguments were made by members of congress who universally voted no for the same reasons, in fact it turned out to box in malosevc. the thing that we can go it alone and do everything 100% and that's the only option available to -- he did strike a right line, he defined a goal, defined a way we're going to do it. let me say one other thing, we're a great and powerful country, what is the value of a great and powerful country if we're not going to step in and
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help other people. >> isn't it basically allowing the french and the british to lead this, seems to want to play second fiddle, doesn't really want to get his head wet in this region. what is your take on the strength of america here? >> it's interesting when we're talking about stepping in when in fact you have other countries that are making libya look like nice guys. look at what's going on on the streets of other countries right now as we speak. one thing the governor mentioned, the oil supply, the chain of the oil supply is going to be broken. we don't get oil from libya, china does. so we are protecting china's oil supply? haven't we done enough for china? they have taken our jobs, they have done so much else to really hurt this country and we now go in and protect china's oil supply. china is the biggest purchaser of oil by far than libya. we purchase nothing from libya. why isn't china involve? the other thing, if you were going to do this attack, if you
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had to do it, it should have been done sooner. our power is so great, we're going to end up winning, but are we winning for people who are friendly with iran or al qaeda? >> governor richardson, let me come back to you, i was in israel last week and doing primary netanyahu and if you're in israel, you're feeling pretty vulnerable at the moment, but you're probably feeling much more vulnerable about what's going on in syria than you are in libya. and you're probably misified that our ally america that you aren't going to get involve in syria, but we are going to get involve in libya. and the reason is that libya has vast oil reserves and syria doesn't. >> if i'm israel i am concerned, the neighborhood is not very friendly and our commitment to israel should -- strengthen the
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military relationship with israel. but at the same time, i don't think the syrian situation is similar to what is happening in lib yarks t libya, the carnage that is taking place there, lost some hope that the syrian leadership will be much more moderate than gadhafi has and deal with this issue more effectively. but i will take issue with mr. trump who i respect. look, the decline in libyan oil supply has affected gasoline prices in the united states. and what happens is opec, and israel is a member of opec, when that supply declines, that affects oil prices. what we need to get oil prices to happen is by increasing that capacity, it is possible that oil prices in the united states will go down. so you can't dismiss libya's
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connection with american gasoline prices. not a perfect situation, but i think the president took the right steps and he explained it very succinctly. >> and anthony is shake his head vigorously during the last three minutes, when we come back, i'll find out why.
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let's go straight to my
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colleague anderson cooper, what have you got on your show tonight? >> we're going to look at what the president said about libya tonight, and what does it mean for the war in libya. the question is has the rebels momentum now stopped? and now will the u.s. and nato deal with towns nato deal with towns where they originally had support? a shocking incident in a tripoli hotel caught on tape as this woman tried to tell reporters of the alleged gang rape. she was dragged away screaming. the gadhafi regime has told conflicting stories about what they've done to her. we'll talk about a human rights activist. those stories and a new video, the tsunami in japan you have to see to believe. i'm joined again by my panel, governor bill richardson, republican anthony weiner and donald trump. let me start with you, i can see
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you shaking your head furiously at what donald trump was saying. >> i was shaking my head at you as well. back to back questions, at once it was how come we're not getting support from the rest of the country. part of being a coalition like nato, a country like the united states you have to put together coalitions so you're not doing all the heavy lifting. it's sheer folly to believe that the international oil supply is not a fungible thing. if you think it doesn't impact u.s. economy, it does, but that's not why the president said we were going in, he said because we're a country that doesn't sit by and let people be slaughtered. i'm glad we're not. does that mean we have to go completely in? it reminds me of the old joke. the food here is terrible and
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the portions are too small. he's probably doing the right thing. >> donald trump, you apparently don't know what you're talking about. >> look, libya has two to three percent of the world's oil. opec is sitting back and laughing at us. they sit down and set the price of oil. there is so much oil at sea, ships are floating at sea, they don't know what to do with it. oil is artificially set, not by libya, but by the people sitting around, the 12 men sitting around the table saying the stupid american leadership is not doing anything to us, we will drain them, and we will drain them now. so don't tell me about libya. the fact is, that opec is setting phony prices for oil, and we do nothing about it. our leadership does nothing about it, and they could, because if it wasn't for us, opec wouldn't exist. >> the intriguing thing about gadhafi is, of course, until
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recently, we were back on friendly terms with this murderous dictator, weren't we? >> yes, and here i'm going to say something, the bush administration did the right thing. they negotiated the end of gadhafi's weapons of mass destruction program. probably he still has some hidden there. but we did do that. he did partially compensate the lockerbie people. not fully as he should have, but there was progress. he took the right decision at the time. however, he still is a murderous leader. he deserves the scorn of the international community should be tried for war crimes. i will agree with donald trump. opec does take those stipulates, but i think the message is something he said, that america needs to shift to new sources of energy, clean sources, renewable.
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solar, wind, natural gas. we need to reduce our dependency on opec, fossil fuels. in that message i do agree with you. >> the president was keen today to say we've learned lessons from iraq, we won't be committing ground troops. what happens if gadhafi manages not just to hang on, but hang on quite strongly and is going nowhere, and begins attacking his people again, to exact bloody revenge? at what point does america feel compelled to send in ground troops, on the same humanitarian pretext they launch air strikes. >> we're allowing nature toe to take the lead. we're part of a larger coalition. i don't think that any president can say what's going to happen, particularly in that part of the world today, but he is taking the steps that i think are right. i would agree, i ultimately believe we did wait too long. part of the reason we did, is because we were putting together this coalition to make it more
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likely for us to succeed. in the meantime, all my republican friends who are criticizing the president for acting without consulting congress. i believe he should have. last week we were defunding npr but not having a debate about the middle east. can the president assure us this won't go any further? i think he laid out a defining philosophy here that i think most americans will agree with. >> the key thought is, most americans don't agree with it, most of the polls suggest the americans -- the average american would actually probably prefer that america doesn't spend billions and billions of more dollars on this kind of mission, and got the economy in america back on track. as a businessman, what do you think? >> i think that's right, but nato is us. there is no such thing as nato. we're the power, we're the money behind nato. it's not a narl distributed
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place or thing. when nato goes in, that's us going in. the arab league wants us to fight their battles, why aren't they paying us for it. >> anthony, you're still shaking your head. >> it's wrong. we're not the sum and substance of nato, nato is our most important powerful coalition. >> but 19% of all -- >> and -- look, you conveyed. >> 19% of all the air strikes in the first few days were the american people. >> the design was you're asking a different question, did we begin using the capabilities we have at other countries, did not have to go ahead to do the things we could to help out with this mission. if you believe, and perhaps mr. trump and you do, believe the idea that there are only two scenarios available to us. go entirely, in with all the troops we can, occupy the country. and do the iraq thing all over again. or are there more nuanced incremental things we can do to
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be helpful. the fact is, we did not agree to go in until the arab league said we want it, we want to support it in the united nations. we did bush one rather than bush two. >> if the arab league says we need you in syria, do we go? >> i think the situation in syria is serious, but all of these things -- >> if the arab league is your criteria, why should americas -- >> i'm not president -- it's not my criteria. >> he's polling better than you. >> to say how the american people feel before the speech -- if the american people don't support this after this speech, i will be very surprised. in fact i'm sure they will in large numbers. the president did something he should have done a while ago. >> polls like anthony's polling, i would drop out immediately. >> you'll be dropping out soon enough, donald, we both know it. >> do we believe he will be
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dropping out soon enough? donald will you be dropping out -- >> no, i just saw polls today that showed me doing very well. when anthony makes a statement like that, it's too bad for him. polls in new york, running for mayor, he does poorly, so i wish him a lot of luck. >> i'm the front runner, big guy. i'm not sure if you'll be around at the end. >> a lot of people are leaving the city if you win. >> thank you all very much. and i'll be right back after this short break.
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